COUN­TRY HAS MADE PROGRESS IN HU­MAN RIGHTS IS­SUES

Swazi Observer - - NATIONAL NEWS - Sto­ries by Nozipho Sibiya

THE coun­try has made progress in ad­dress­ing some of the con­cerns and rec­om­men­da­tions raised by the United Na­tions Com­mit­tee.

This was con­firmed by EU am­bas­sador to Eswa­tini dur­ing a break­fast meet­ing with the Ed­i­tors Fo­rum of Eswa­tini on the visit of the Hu­man Rights Del­e­ga­tion to the coun­try. Present dur­ing the me­dia en­gage­ment at Moun­tain Inn yes­ter­day, was mem­ber of the UN Hu­man Rights Com­mit­tee, Christof Heyns, Rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Cen­tre for Civil and Po­lit­i­cal Rights, Eswa­tini Hu­man Rights Com­mis­sion, Sa­belo Masuku, Ex­ec­u­tive Sec­re­tary of the com­mis­sion Linda Nx­u­malo and many oth­ers.

The EU am­bas­sador said im­por­tant achieve­ments had been the re­vi­sion of the Pub­lic Or­der Act 2017 and the en­act­ment of Sex­ual Of­fences and Do­mes­tic vi­o­lence Act. She said the UN hu­man rights com­mit­tee is ex­pect­ing a new re­port from the King­dom of Eswa­tini to il­lus­trate the achieve­ments done since 2017 and the chal­lenges in im­ple­ment­ing the rec­om­men­da­tions made on the three ar­eas men­tioned be­fore.

“We have en­cour­aged the coun­try to con­sult and in­volve the civil so­ci­ety and non-gov­ern­men­tal or­gan­i­sa­tions in the prepa­ra­tions of this re­port.

I was happy to note from the meet­ing, that gov­ern­ment demon­strated a will­ing­ness to em­brace this ap­proach as it will with­out any doubt en­rich the qual­ity of the state re­port,” she said.

She also thanked the Eswa­tini Com­mis­sion on Hu­man Rights and Pub­lic Ad­min­is­tra­tion and the Eswa­tini Civil Or­gan­i­sa­tions on their pos­i­tive in­volve­ment on this progress to re­new the Euro­pean Union sup­port to the new Gov­ern­ment of the King­dom of Eswa­tini in prepa­ra­tions of the hu­man rights nec­es­sary re­ports so the coun­try would be able to re­port fac­tu­ally and timely.

She also high­lighted that in the past three days, the Euro­pean Union en­gaged mem­bers of the UN Hu­man Rights Del­e­ga­tion, the Eswa­tini Com­mis­sion on Hu­man Rights and pub­lic ad­min­is­tra­tion, gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials and civil so­ci­ety or­gan­i­sa­tions on the sub­ject of hu­man rights which is the cen­tral to their work glob­ally.

“Our di­a­logue with the gov­ern­ment and civil so­ci­ety un­der Ar­ti­cle of the Cotonou Agree­ment which we al­ways hold an­nu­ally gives us the op­por­tu­nity to take stock and as­sess the progress made on the is­sues of democ­racy and hu­man rights in the coun­try,” she added.

She said the EU fi­nanced de­vel­op­men­tal pro­grammes and projects also con­tribute to the ful­fil­ment of part­ner coun­tries, in­ter­na­tional hu­man rights obli­ga­tion, in­clud­ing the rec­om­men­da­tions put for­ward by the UN treaty bod­ies dur­ing the Uni­ver­sal Pe­ri­odic Re­view as well as other mon­i­tor­ing bod­ies.

(Pic: Si­mon Sha­bangu)

RE­MARKS: Act­ing Hu­man Rights Com­mis­sion Com­mis­sioner Sa­belo Masuku mak­ing re­marks dur­ing the Hu­man Rights meet­ing at Moun­tain Inn yes­ter­day mon­rn­ing.

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